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COA's allegation that Sexual Abuse/Rape was Committed in the Premises of the Eritrean Orthodox Church in Rotterdam are Lies!

Reports of sex abuse/rape at an Eritrean Orthodox Church in Rotterdam were all lies. The authorities of the city have said they are not going to investigate the matter because, according to them, "there is no evidence of abuse at the Eritrean church".

By Drs. Tsegezab Gebregergis | MdreBahri

As the readers of Mdre Bahri are fully aware, in the last month, I have been very busy investigating the allegation of COA – the  Central Organ for the Reception of Asylum Seekers – that, in the premises of the Kidane Mehret Christian Orthodox Church in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, sexual assault/rape was committed, which resulted in the pregnancy of  some 20 under-age Eritrean refugee girls based at the refugee centre in Oranje village.

During the time I spent researching/investigating the much talked about issue in the Dutch media, I visited several refugee camps in the Netherlands, met and held meetings and discussed the issue with various Eritrean community leaders and individual members in order to gather information so as to understand and establish what the Eritrean community’s perception is about the alleged rape.

I also twice met the heads of the Rotterdam criminal police and held thorough discussions, each time lasting more than two hours. Needless to say, everything which I discussed with the police is audio recorded.

I also visited the COA headquarters in Rijswijk twice and conducted intensive discussions with the uncooperative and control-freak official representatives of COA.

I also twice visited the controversial Oranje refugee centre, in the village of Oranje Drentse Hooglanden, and met and interviewed, together and individually, the girls portrayed by COA and the Dutch media as minors and victims of sexual abuse.

Furthermore, I also met, together and individually, the young Eritrean boys at the camp to learn what they knew about the alleged sex abuse of the under-age girls living at the same camp.

I also visited the church where it is claimed that the sexual abuse was committed and met its leaders and the chief priest there. I had an open and frank discussion with all of them and all gave me satisfactory answers to the questions I posed.

Having collected all the vital information from the various meetings I held, using diverse methods of research/investigation in an open and transparent approach, I am now in a solid position to publish the results of my independent investigation in the form of a press release.

I thus conclude that none of the Eritrean girls living at the Oranje refugee camp are under-aged and none of them are victims of sex abuse.

I arrived at this conclusion after directly asking the young girls at the refugee centre the following crucial question: “How many of you living at this camp are under-aged and how many of you are the victims of sex abuse at the Eritrean Orthodox church in Rotterdam?”

The direct and revealing answer which I received from all the young girls I interviewed was that none were under-aged and none were victims of sex abuse, a direct contradiction of the claims made by COA and the Dutch press.

Incidentally, at the last meeting (February  3 2016) I had with the Dutch police investigating sex-related crime, I was told  plainly that, in regard to the alleged sexual abuse at an Eritrean Orthodox church in Rotterdam, the police and the Rotterdam Public Prosecution Service had made an exploratory fact-finding investigation into the COA-disseminated allegations  of sexual abuse.

However, so far, they told me, nobody has made a declaration (Angifte) to the police and therefore there is no investigation underway and no evidence whatsoever that the Eritrean Orthodox Church is involved in any sex-related crime. I also understood from the police that there was a large meeting of Dutch experts on January 14, involving representatives of COA, Nidos (which provides guardianship for unaccompanied under-age asylum-seekers), the Ministry of Justice and Security, the Public Prosecution Service (National Prosecutor and District Prosecutor), the National Police, the Rotterdam Police, the Expertise Centre for Human Trafficking, the Bureau of the National Rapporteur on Human Trafficking, the Refugee Council of the Netherlands (VVN), Tilburg University and the City of Rotterdam.

These organisations and their representatives discussed the sex-abuse case and related matters and reached a similar conclusion to that of Rotterdam’s police.

Other than this, during my visit to the COA-run refugee centre in Oranje, I learned that an alleged rape of a young Eritrean girl had occurred inside her apartment at the centre.

I was told that the girl arrived home late in the evening and, believing she was alone in her apartment as usual, took off her clothes and went to her bed. Once she had switched off the light, someone who had been hiding under her bed popped up and raped her. As a result, the girl became pregnant and COA officials became aware of the alleged incident.

Although COA officials helped her to get rid of the undesired pregnancy, I was told that they did not report this serious incident to the criminal police even though it had happened on their premises. Nor did they thoroughly investigate the case themselves. This incident, in itself, clearly shows that COA officials were irresponsible and negligent in response to a serious crime which had happened on its own premises.

On the contrary, although there is no shred of evidence to support the original claim, we have seen how COA officials tried in vain to make political capital out of the so-called sex abuse case involving the Eritrean Orthodox Church.

Thus, after all is said and done, the sex-abuse case against the Eritrean Orthodox Church is based on outright and elaborate lies with the purpose of achieving some hidden political agenda, just as the sanctions imposed against Eritrea by the UN/US were based on lies in order to discredit and politically  isolate Eritrea and strangle its economy.

In other words, I have now established beyond any reasonable doubt that the Kidane Mihret Orthodox church, in Rotterdam, was not involved in any way in any sex-abuse case, as was falsely alleged by COA and the Dutch press.

It is therefore high time that COA, the Dutch press and all the Dutch governmental organisations directly and indirectly involved in implicating the Eritrean Orthodox church in Rotterdam in this vile case offer an open apology to the Kidanet Mihret Orthodox church leaders, its priests and the thousands of Eritrean refugees living in the Netherlands, i.e. those that have been deeply affected by the irresponsible and libellous information that COA allowed to reach the Dutch newspapers.

Further details, in a much larger report, will follow shortly.

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COA's allegation that Sexual Abuse/Rape was Committed in the Premises of the Eritrean Orthodox Church in Rotterdam are Lies! Reviewed by Admin on 12:34 AM Rating: 5

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